October is one of my favorite months with the Exceeding Expectations kids. As you all know, our top priority for the kids is, and always will be, education. That said, every October we participate in two athletic events that I feel are significant in laying the groundwork necessary for them to be successful in the academic world and in their adult lives. The first of these events is the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) triathlon, aptly called “The Best Day in Triathlon.” Here’s a brief overview from their website: “In 1994, three friends started a triathlon fundraiser to help one man regain his independence after a tragic accident left him a quadriplegic. From one came many, and Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) took root in the belief that sports and an active lifestyle are a pathway to more in life. Since that fundraiser 25 years ago, CAF has been committed to breaking the financial barrier that individuals with physical challenges face to participate in sports and live a healthy and active lifestyle.” Participating alongside challenged athletes in a very tough race gives our kids an additional perspective on their own lives. The racers on the course with them face obstacles that they
Tag Archives: SXSW
The 2015 SXSW Festival and Conference in Austin, TX has come to a close. For those cave dwellers out there who may not have heard, SXSW (meaning “South by Southwest”) is a series of interactive meetings and events focused on emerging technologies, film and musical entertainment. Over the last couple of weeks, attendees have been treated to presentations and exhibits with topics ranging from new media and entertainment, to advancements in wearable devices and health monitoring tech. Basically, it’s the only place on earth where it would make sense to find Snoop Dogg mixing with robots. This year, the focus was heavily centered around wearable technology and Artificial Intelligence. There was even a debate as to whether advances in AI could be too much of a good thing. Before we tell you our favorite from the event, here are some of the major topics covered at SXSW 2015: It’s All About the Self: Live streaming apps: Meerkat, Periscope, Teleparty and Stre.am were all big hits. It’s all about taking the selfie to the next level with streaming video. Also featured: Selfie sticks, GIF photo booths, and a bunch of people roaming around taking pictures of themselves. Robotics: Prosthetics: Advances in robotics have made way for prosthetics with almost fully functional
We attended SXSW Interactive for the first time ever and boy, what a wonderful geek fest it was! The highlights of our trip included: Making new friends with lots of smart people Handing out complimentary one-hour Wi-Fi access passes Being a part of the community to rally support for Japan’s earthquake and tsunami victims Indulging in Austin BBQ and food trucks Listening to inspiring keynotes and speakers. Our top three picks: Marissa Mayer, Google’s vice president of consumer services, on Google maps for mobile and location services. Blake Mycoskie, Founder of TOMS shoes, on the genesis of TOMS shoes and tips for attracting loyal customers and good employees by making them feel they’re a part of something bigger: Part I and Part II. Scott Belksy, author of the book Making Ideas Happen, on cultivating creativity and unleashing great ideas in an organization. We couldn’t find a good video of his presentation at SXSW but here is the exact same talk he gave at TED 2011. Thanks to the city of Austin and cheers to Boingo friends, old and new! Here’s a video of Boingo superfans giving us some love.
At SXSW Interactive this year, many attendees skipped the business cards and instead swapped contact info via Hashable, “the ultimate networking app.” Hashable was super useful for us during SXSW (since we ran out of business cards the first day), and it’s an environmentally-friendly solution. The Hashable app (free), available on iPhone and Android devices, allows you to: Exchange contact information by entering the Twitter handle or email address associated with the other person’s Hashable profile. Check in to a location and tag the people with you. The check-in can be a public one that tweets your location and companions, or it can be used as a CRM tool that allows you to privately note meetings with people in your network. See who your contacts are meeting through an “Activity” tab that displays public check-ins. If you’d like to give Hashable a try, sign up for an account here. To download the app for iPhone, click here. To download the app for Android, click here. Let us know if you find Hashable as useful as we did. Already have a Hashable account? Thumbs up or thumbs down?
The annual SXSW (South By Southwest) festival in Austin kicks off this week, and we’ll be attending for the first time. Suffice it to say that while we’re very excited, we’ve also heard enough about the event to know it’s quite a chaotic scene. So we tapped into the wealth of information available online for advice on getting the most out of the event. If you’re a first-timer, check out these tips from from veteran attendees: Plan your sessions: There is a seemingly endless number of sessions to attend, and they’re scattered all over the place. Put together a calendar of must-attend sessions and map it out so you know the best route to get from one point to another. But factor in some spontaneity: Commit to a few sessions/events but otherwise be open to the unexpected. Keep an eye on Twitter for realtime activities that crop up. Get to know the layout of the conference center and surrounding area: If you’re arriving early, walk around the conference center and familiarize yourself with the landscape. Cross-pollinate: Don’t settle into groups of people you already know. Get outside of your comfort zone and meet new people. Be outgoing and introduce yourself